Scholars progress in FA Cup

a player on the pitch

Kel Akpobire's two penalties helped secure victory over Ilkeston Town

Loughborough University progressed through to the Preliminary Round of the FA cup after a 3-1 victory over Ilkeston Town played at Loughborough Dynamo's Nanpantan ground

Last years Midland Football League Champions Ilkeston Town arrived in Loughborough looking to repeat their performance when they last played the scholars in late April, which enabled them to take the league title.

However, the scholars had a different idea, with an Akpobire brace putting the Robins out of the FA Cup in the first fixture of the competition. The opening 25 minutes saw Ilkeston dominate possession but with a resolute scholars backline who are yet to concede in the league there were no major chances for the visitors.

After seeing out the early pressure an swift counter attack saw Kel Akpobire break into the box only to be brought down on 33 minutes. The resulting penalty saw Akpobire convert comfortably past the Robins Keeper.

Although the scholars were now on top having more of the possession, the vistors nearly equalised when a scramble in the box concluded with keeper James Stallan keeping the ball out on the line. Soon afterwards the scholars would have a man advantage when a wild tackle from Tom Marshall on Akpobire saw the Ilkeston player sent straight off for dangerous play. This advantage would come to fruition minutes later when a Will Dawes Cross across the box fell to Ferrinho who's close range effort was parried to Ronan Silva at the back post who slotted home in first half added time.

Loughborough Univeristy 2-0 Ilkeston Town

The second half started bright for the scholars and it took just over 10 minutes for the Scholars to grab their third. With ilkeston having the ball in the univeristy half Akpobire managed to pinch the ball and sprint away from the chasing Ilkeston players, as Akpobire got inside the area he was again brought down for the second penalty of the match. The striker stepped up to the stop and fire home for his second of the afternoon.

The game could have seen a more closely fought finish after a goal from Alex Marshall in the 65 minute lead to increased pressure in and around the Scholars box for the final 20 minutes. Despite the pressure the univeristy held firm and booked their place in the next round where they travel to Maltby Main on Saturday 24th August 3pm Kick Off.


The Non-league paper caught up with Head Coach Alex Ackerley after the game:

I'm really happy with how they stuck to their task this afternoon. We go to some places where there's a lot of fans and it can be quite intense. But we can't influence that. We have to do what we're good at and it's a really good result for the group. We're really really happy with the effort they've put in this game.

The Non-League Paper
Ilkeston match stats in a table